IN TUNE WITH THE TIMES
The national holiday - Day of Workers of Healthcare and Medical Industry -is marked in Turkmenistan annually on July 21. The priorities of Turkmenistan's healthcare development include prevention of diseases, strengthening of principles of a healthy lifestyle in society, introduction of advanced medical technologies, improving skills of medical professionals and extensive international cooperation.
This was confirmed by the festive events that took place in the days of celebration of Day of Workers of Healthcare and Medical Industry. By tradition, the winners of the contest "Best Doctor of the Year" were named, and new health facilities were put into operation. There were also held an international exhibition and a scientific conference on Turkmenistan's achievements in healthcare and other festive events.
The number of participants of the International Exhibition "Healthcare 2016" increases every year. They represent a wide range of manufacturers of pharmaceutical products, medical equipment and consumables that provide services in various areas of the health system. Amongst 240 companies participating in the exhibition, 22 companies presented their products in Turkmenistan for the first time. Moreover, 126 companies represented Europe.
The leading experts in various fields of medicine, as well as world-renown scientists from various countries attended the scientific forum. Among them were heads and representatives of major international scientific and clinical centers, hospitals and higher education establishments, as well as experts and specialists of companies - developers of new technologies for the healthcare sector.
Four medical centers were inaugurated in Ashgabat on the day of celebration of Day of Workers of Healthcare and Medical Industry. Attending the inauguration ceremony, President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov viewed the new medical facilities, including the International Center of Neurology, the Center for Public Health and Nutrition, the Morphologic Centre and the Centre for Prevention of Specially Dangerous Infections.
According to the head of state, these health facilities should focus on the methods of timely detection of neurological diseases and their treatment using advanced techniques and in-depth research in this area, improving efficiency of healthcare, prevention of diseases, increasing longevity of people, control of quality of food and drinking water, monitoring of environmental safety, etc. In the field of scientific work, experts of the newly opened centers should study the diseases that are most common in the country and region and develop new methods of their diagnosis and treatment.
The International Center of Neurology was incorporated into the Directorate of International Medical Centers. The mew medical complex with a total area of 23.3 thousand square meters consists of five main blocks. This largest neurological clinic is designed to become a major research and medical-diagnostic center of the country capable of solving any issues in the field of neurology and related disciplines.
There are all necessary conditions for treatment of neurological diseases of children and adults. The center's hospital can admit 120 patients at a time. In addition to the traditional medical departments such as admission; consultations and diagnostic; functional diagnostics and endoscopic studies; X-ray; surgical unit; anesthesiology and intensive care there is a number of specialized medical units. They include the departments of angiography and acute strokes; early rehabilitation of patients suffering from stroke and surgical treatment of these disorders. The center also has general neurology and physiotherapy departments with facilities for rehabilitation. The diagnostic laboratory equipment makes it possible to conduct advanced research, thus significantly expanding the range of research work.
About half a dozen departments of the center boast relevant international standard equipment, including for magnetic resonance therapy, computed tomography, angiography, echoencephalography, ultrasound and other medical and diagnostic tests, as well as treatment of stroke and spinal cord diseases.
The Center for Public Health and Nutrition of the State Sanitary and Epidemiological Service is an innovative enterprise focusing on research of the influence of social and biological factors on the health of the population as a whole and development of environmentally friendly food technologies and norms of healthy nutrition.
The main activities of the Center include monitoring of environment based on bio indication methods, constant monitoring of food quality, including imported food products, development of science-based sanitary and epidemiological rules and regulations.
The Center has the departments of state registration of food products and packaging materials; laboratory monitoring of markets; specialized food laboratories; laboratory of environment, labor, utilities and radiation hygiene; toxicology; bacteriology; virology with automated bio bank system for safe storage of viruses; parasitology, epidemiology and immunology with central repository of immunobiological tools. The laboratory of the department of especially dangerous infections will conduct vaccine and microbiological research and testing related to infectious agents at the third level of biosafety.
There will also function the department of informational analysis and the scientific-production department that will help to improve the general laboratory network of the country. The Center's specialists will conduct research in the field of food quality and safety, ecological and biological environment, prevention of diseases related to food and water, as well as work on certain areas of virology, bacteriology and parasitology to identify the sources of infectious diseases.
Previously, such research would take a lot of time. Now, thanks to advanced technologies, they will be carried out automatically - fast and with high quality and accuracy. Specialists trained at the relevant German laboratories will interpret the resulting information using the latest data and programs.
The new Center also boasts a training center for special training of experts of the State Sanitary and Epidemiological Service and medical institutions of the country, as well as students of the State Medical University.
The Morphological Centre consists of the central forensic and central autopsy institutions funded by the state budget, as well as the department of study and research of the State Medical University. It will accommodate a number of departments of the medical university, such as human anatomy; topographical anatomy and operative surgery; pathological anatomy; forensic medicine and law.
The international standard modern technical equipment creates conditions for histological studies using histochemical and cytochemical analyses and electron microscopy techniques that make it possible to increase the amount of data received in terms of structural and functional changes in the body's tissues. The methods of fluorescent microscopy and immunohistochemical study at the Morphological Center will have a special place in identifying the malignancy antigens that will bring oncology diagnostics to a new level. Being the most reliable method of diagnostics, the morphological study helps to choose the right tactics of treatment.
Another newly opened facility - the Centre for Prevention of Specially Dangerous Infections of the State Sanitary and Epidemiological Service is designed to conduct work on the country protection from importation and spread of particularly dangerous and quarantine infections. The Center will coordinate activities conducted by the medical institutions of the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan aimed at preventing the emergence of extremely dangerous and quarantine diseases. It consists of five departments - laboratory; epidemiology; analysis and forecasting; science and training; zoology, parasitology and animal care, disinfection and disinfestation. Each of the departments has several highly specialized laboratories. For example, using the bioinformatics methods the laboratory of molecular genetic studies can identify new genotypes of microorganisms and develop effective measures for prevention of diseases caused by them.
It is for the first time that Turkmenistan has got the facility for the long-term storage of live bacteria for systematic scientific study of pathogens of dangerous infectious diseases. In this facility, the microbial samples of dangerous diseases are frozen and dried in a special way and stored under strict control in specialized refrigeration devices.
It is no less important that the Center's specialists will be served by 18 special vehicles of different modifications that are capable of operating in harsh conditions of the Karakum desert. The off-road vehicles with high capacity can take the Centre's specialists to the required place for preventive and anti-epidemic work at any time of the day and year.
By the way, all four newly opened medical centers - the International Center of Neurology, the Center for Public Health and Nutrition, the Morphologic Centre, the Centre for Prevention of Specially Dangerous Infections of the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan received the prestigious award in the field of real estate (International Property Awards). This award was established in 1995. It provides for several nominations, including "Architecture", "Interior", "Company in the sphere of real estate" and others. It is currently one of the most prestigious international awards in the field of residential and commercial real estate.
An official ceremony of presenting Turkmenistan with the international certificate of the World Health Organization on the elimination of measles and rubella was a significant event of celebration of Day of Workers of Healthcare and Medical Industry. It was held at the State Medical University. According to the participants, this event is recognition of the high level of Turkmenistan's healthcare, the efficiency of the ongoing work in this area, including the work on ensuring broad routine immunization of the population, as well as the success in implementing additional immunization activities. This is evidenced by the fact that not a single case of measles and rubella has been registered in Turkmenistan since January 2012. According to the WHO international experts, Turkmenistan's experience in achieving these goals should be replicated in other countries of the European region.
This was also confirmed by the participants of the High-Level Consultations on prevention of malaria reintroduction in the European region of the World Health Organization. The Forum brought together senior representatives of nine countries and leading experts from the WHO headquarters and WHO Regional Office for Europe. It was organized with the support of the Government of Turkmenistan. Among the main objectives of consultations was preparation of the final text of the Ashgabat Declaration on Prevention of Malaria Reintroduction.
It was not by accident that Turkmenistan was chosen as a forum venue. According to WHO staff, Turkmenistan proved that elimination of malaria is possible and success can be achieved if there is political will and well-funded programs. Turkmenistan is the first WHO-certified country in the region in the 21st century, and it served as a model for other countries on how to organize the work, especially on the issues relating to cross-border cooperation.